fost-adopt friday: the first

by debi9kids on October 13, 2011

To say that I jumped into foster care with blinders on is an understatement, a huge one.

While I had grown up in a home with a whole bunch of foster children, I never really had been exposed to the dramatic and often emotionally draining bureaucracy that is the foster care system.
Instead, all I saw and knew was that I was ready to open my home to babies and toddlers and couldn’t wait to get started on my training.

I remember when I first called DYFS to find out about signing up for classes and the silence on the other end was deafening when I told them my age, 21. But, once I told them who my mother was (a medically foster parent for 20+ years and a “legend” in her own right in the foster parenting and DYFS community), the attitude changed and I was signed up and ready to start.

Although Russ and I were seriously dating at the time, I was attending the classes alone, as a single parent. I had bought a home after years of working and saving money as a manager of a pharmacy and my intentions were to be a single, working foster mom (with the help of Russ as a “surrogate daddy” ).
I’ll admit, it was sort-of crazy when I look back now. I mean, who goes out of their way to be a single, working 21 year old mom to someone else’s child??? ~ Apparently me 🙂
Anyway, it was my plan.

I attended the classes in the evening (I honestly can’t remember how many or how long) and when I “graduated”, the waiting game began.
I finished my classes in June, had my fingerprints taken shortly afterward, and then sat on edge every time the phone rang. While it felt like I was waiting forever, it really wasn’t and just two weeks after my paperwork cleared, I was called.

DYFS wanted to place a 10 month old little boy with me and his younger brother, a preemie, would be placed with my mom. (Their hope was that once the baby was no longer medically fragile, that I would be able to foster both brothers).
It was daunting, but I was excited.
Not only was I getting a placement, but I would eventually be a foster mom to brothers!

I can’t describe the feeling in my heart as I waited for my social worker to arrive with my first baby. I had never been a mom before and the anticipation was palpable.
I paced next to my door, checking the clock every few minutes and finally the car pulled up next to my home.
The dog immediately started barking and Russ held him back as I went outside.

As I walked toward the car, it was as if time slowed down.
The worker opened the car door and those eyes captured me instantly.
He was sitting in his car seat, smiling away and I knew, in an instant…
he had stolen my heart
and I wasn’t getting it back 😉
He reached his arms up to me, I undid his buckles and lifted him from his chair and as he wrapped his chunky little legs around my side and placed his little hand on my face, I was in love instantly.

David was the ideal first placement.
He was always cheerful, a great sleeper, an awesome eater (check out his chunk!) and no visitation.
It’s sad when you realize why babies aren’t being visited, but often it ends up being what’s best, for the birth parents and for the children.

And that was the case with David, my first baby, who stole my heart the day he laid his eyes on mine.

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{ 16 comments… read them below or add one }

Renata October 13, 2011 at 7:44 pm

Hi Debi

Thanks for sharing ~ you sure were brave, but God was guiding you in this path ~ after all look at your beautiful family!

We are praying about fostering. It's been on our hearts for a few years, but we decided to go the path of the vas reversal first ~ unfortunately nothing's happened after a year ( although there is no reason why not) so we are praying about if we are meant to foster. Leaving it in the Lord's hands at the moment.

Have a wonderful weekend




debi9kids October 13, 2011 at 7:46 pm

I will definitely be saying prayers for you, that the Lord gives you a clear path.
Either option, you will be rich with blessings.


Kath October 13, 2011 at 7:48 pm

Wow! I cant imagine too many 21 yr olds that would even think of being a foster parent let alone doing it!

A match made in heaven for you, Russ, and David! And the others to follow! He is a very blessed boy to have you as hs mama!


cat@juggling act October 14, 2011 at 1:04 am

Oh this is beautiful! He is such a charming young man today. What happened with his brother?


debi9kids October 14, 2011 at 3:56 am

That is to come in another post (but preview: my mom adopted him )


Heather October 14, 2011 at 3:04 am

I love your family story. =] David is certainly a cutie for sure.

I have a friend who fosters and sometimes the "visits" can be a hardship.

Prayers for God's clear direction. <3


Dina @ 4 Lettre Word October 14, 2011 at 3:41 am

Wow, Debi…what a lovely story! Very inspiring.


Lisa @ Oh Boy Oh Boy October 14, 2011 at 9:15 am

When I was little my babysitter was a foster mom for babies. I always said I would do the same thing and I still really feel like I have the heart for it but the process IS daunting.


Kelli @ writing the October 14, 2011 at 12:06 pm

How could resist a sweet little face like that? 🙂


Mrs.D October 14, 2011 at 6:52 pm

very touching! thanks for sharing the story…great to be here…have a wonderful weekend ahead!


Trina October 18, 2011 at 6:22 am

What a great story…is he loving his baby picture up for the world to see? LOL I'd love to stumble this but I cannot see a stumble tab.


debi9kids October 18, 2011 at 6:41 am

Thanks Trina. Yes, actually, my kids all love when I share about when they were babies 🙂

To Stumble my posts, you need to click on the green arrow next to the Twitter & FB mini buttons at the bottom of my post and it will then show more buttons 🙂


Nichole October 18, 2011 at 6:39 am

Thanks so much for sharing. I've wanted to foster for years now but wasn't brave like you when I was in my early 20's. Now, circumstances make fostering not a viable option but I am still hopeful for the future.


debi9kids October 18, 2011 at 6:41 am

brave, or crazy ? LOL
I wish you luck in the future. It really is the most rewarding thing I have ever done with my life.


Heather October 18, 2011 at 6:41 am

This is such a sweet story. Thank you for sharing.


debi9kids October 18, 2011 at 6:42 am

Thank you for reading 😉


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